So Yahoo and Bing have joined hands to take on Google. So has the playing field for search domination leveled off just a bit you think?
After establishing the Search Alliance between Yahoo and Microsoft, Yahoo had quickly begun transitioning Bing results into Yahoo results. So now, in the US and Canada for English results only, Yahoo search experiences are now powered by the Microsoft platform. This change in other markets will come fairly soon given the speed at which the transition is happening immediately after the public announcement was made.
Yahoo will be displaying mostly organic results from Bing. And initially Yahoo will only deliver English-language searches via Bing. As both partners work together to leverage each other, it is not unrealistic to expect that they will soon cover more markets and include other language searches.
Google continues to dominate the search usage market with greater than 60% of users using Google Search. So has the competitive landscape evened out a little bit with this search alliance between Yahoo and Bing. Or has Google monopoly on search gotten stronger with the search alliance between Yahoo and Bing? Will new players crop up to pick up smaller usage shares in the US and Canadian Search markets?
We're all waiting to see how this plays out….
Whatever search engine you personally prefer, the recent August statistics released by comScore prove that Google has an impressive 65.8 percentage of US search market share under its belt. This compared to Yahoo’s 17.1 percent and Bing’s 11 percent.
But Google did lose a little ground when these results are compared to its 66.4 percent search market share in June.
So how is the search market share calculated?
ComScore calculates these numbers using a methodology called “Explicit Core Search”. This method excludes contextual links and slide shows. Yahoo and Bing recently added contextual links and slideshows forcing comScore to calculate metrics using another method also called “Total Core Search”.
And how do slideshows and contextual shortcuts make any difference?
A single click on a slideshow triggers a series of sites to load automatically and each slide is counted as a click. When users hover over some words in articles contextual links pop up and are counted as clicks too.
This different technique of searching was reflected in the Total Core Search statistics. Google accounted for about 61.6 percent of the market share while Yahoo was at 20 percent and Bing followed with 12.6 percent. This difference in patterns prompted comScore to change its methodology and offer two distinct fields, called Explicit Core Search and Total Core Search.
Experts have backed this change in methodology. This is because explicit core search tracks only those searches in which users entered specific queries to get results, unlike when you enter one query and get a cascade of links, all counting as queries.
With Yahoo joining hands with Bing, it remains to be seen if they are successful in leveraging their combined strengths to fend off Google and obtain a larger search market share.